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Publication numberUS2637820 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 5, 1953
Filing dateMar 3, 1950
Priority dateMar 3, 1950
Publication numberUS 2637820 A, US 2637820A, US-A-2637820, US2637820 A, US2637820A
InventorsMccreary Ralph L
Original AssigneeCollins Radio Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Current integrator
US 2637820 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

May 5, 1953 R. L. MGCREARY CURRENT INTEGRATOR 2 SHEETS-SHEET 1 Filed March 5, 1959 H II PULSE COUNTER P0; 55 RA r5 (pa/v TER lllllll vwvvv INVENTOR.

M T L H m 4% Y a Y E M m T H May 5, 1953 R. L. MOCREARY 2,637,820

CURRENT INTEGRATOR Filed March 5, 1950 2 SHEETS--SHEET 2 P0; 56'' Coo/v TER IN V EN TOR. PM. PH L.M (RE/WY H TTORNEY Patented May 5, 1953 Ralph LhMcCrcary fiedar Rapids; Iowa. assi nor to Collins Radio Company, cedar Rapids; Iowa,

, a corporation of Iowa Application March 3, 1950', Serial No. 1477;408

This invention relates in general to current're cording apparatus, and in particular to apparatus for measuring currents of very low magnitude.

It is sometimes necessary to measure a very small current. For example, the ion gun of a cyclotron has a very small current and it is quite difficult to accurately measure it. The conven-. tional ammeter is not usableb'ecauseof the small current.

It is an object of this invention, therefore, to provide apparatus which will accurately record currents of very low magnitude.

Another object of this invention is to provide apparatus which will measure the flow of charged particles very accurately.

Yet another object is to provide apparatus for measuring the flow of either negatively or positively charged particles.

A further object of this invention is to intea grate a fluctuating current to measure the amount of charge.

A feature of this invention is found in the pro vision for a collector which intercepts charged particles and furnishes their charge to a condenser, thus biasing a non-conducting tubeto the conducting state. As the tube commences to conduct, plate cur-rent passes through an-inductive coil which induces voltage in the grid cir-'- cuit with a polarity suchthat the grid becomes more positive. As the grid becomes more and more positive, part of the electron flow from the cathode will flow to the grid instead of the plate; until finally the plate current-is zero.- As the plate current falls to zero, the inductive effect will tend to drive the grid far negative. This cycle is repeated as more charge is supplied to the condenser and a pulse counter inductively coupled to the plate coil records th repetitive rate of the cycles. This rate is directly proportional to the average current at the collector electrode. The instrument may be used to integrate a current of ranging magnitude to obtain the average rate-of charge movement.

Further objects, features, and advanta es of this invention will become apparent from the following description and claims when read in view of the drawings, in which: v v

Figure l is a wiring diagram ofthe ap aratus of the invention wherein positive charge is col le t d on a coll tor lec de;

Figure 2 is av modification or the invention illustrated in Fi ure 1 wh r in thec ctcr ele trode has been replaced by any unknown current source; and,

4 Claims. (01. ass-sac) Figure 3 is a wiring diagram of a charge flowmeter for recording the flow of negatively charged particles.

Referring to Figure 1, assume that it is desired to record the flow of positively charged particles. A'collecton'designated as ID, is placed in the path of the charged particles so that they impinge thereon. As the particles impinge on the collector 10, they give up their charge to the collector and cause current to flow through the resist! ance R1 and R2. The resistance R1 is relatively large and the current through R2 will, therefore, be appreciably greaterthan that through R1. As the positive-charges are collected on the collector l0, point A becomes more positive. If a triode tube V is initially in the non-conducting state, it will commence to conduct when the point A goes above the cutoff potential. This is true because the point A is connected through the inductive coil II to the grid l2. As conduction starts theplate current flows from the plate 13 through a coil it, connected in series therewith. The coils I l and M are inductively coupled to-- gether in such a manner that an increasing cur! rent passing through the coil I l will induce a voltage in coil with a polarity such that it drives the grid I2 more positive. As the grid I2 becomes more positive; more plate current flows and the grid begins to draw current. The increasing plate current continues to drive the grid even more positive, until finally the grid draws enough-current to cause theplate current to decline. When this condition occurs, the voltage induced in the coil II will be in the opposite polarity tothe voltage induced when the plate current was increasing, and thus the grid IE will be driven negative as the plate current falls to zero. When the grid current flows, it passes through the capacitance C2 due to the relatively high frequency'components of the grid current.

When the grid of the tubehas been driven past cutoif', the point A is at a negative potential and remains there until the positively charged particles impinging on the collector I0 build it up to a potential high enough to cause conduction to start once-again in the tube V. This cycle is repeated again and again and the number of cycles is directly proportional to the charge collected at the collector l0.

Inductively coupled to the coil M is a third coil [6 which is connected to a pulse counter [1. A meter [8 indicates the number of pulses. Thus the number of cycles occurring gives an indication of the total positive charge collected.

The invention allows beams of positively charged particles such as protons, deuterons, alpha particles, or positive ions to be integrated. The collector has a capacitance to ground of C1. The values of R1 and C1 are chosen so that their product, R101 is very much greater than the longest integrated time. The values of R2 and C2 are selected so that (R1+R2)C2 is much greater than the longest integrated time (tmax). The bias voltage is so chosen for the tube V that when the grid is at ground potential, the plate current is reduced to a small steady value.

The cathode condenser Ck and the cathode re sistor R1; must be chosen so that Rkck is much less than tmm, Where tznin is the shortest'integrated time. Tube V and the coils I4 and II with the inductive coupling are commonly described as a blocking oscillator which is known to those skilled in the art. For more detailed description of the theory of operation of such a device, reference may be had to the publication, Radiation Laboratory Series, volume 19, chapter 6, pages 205 to 253.

Figure 2 is similar in all respects to Figure 1 except that the collector has been replaced by any current source I9 which it is desired to measure. The current source must be connected so that the positive side will be connected to point A. The operation of the counter is the same as the one illustrated in Figure 1. In this case the current source l9 replaces the capacitance C1 because it is analogous to a large capacitance. The pulse counter ll of Figure 1 is replaced by a pulse rate counter 20 and the read.- ing of meter 25 is directly proportional to the current flow of the unknown source 19.

Figure 3 illustrates a circuit for integrating negatively charged particles such as negatively charged ions or electrons. A collector 2| collects the negatively charged particles. A tube V1 is initially non-conducting because its grid 26 is at ground potential due to the grid-leak resistor Rs- The cathode 27 will initially be at a positive potential with respect to the grid because of the biasing voltage from the battery 23. A diode rectifier 24 is connected in series with the grid 26 and the cathode 21. As the collector 2| collects a negative charge, the point D is driven less positive until the cathode is at a low enough potential to cause conduction to start in the tube V1. The tube V2 starts to conduct when tube V1 does, and the V1 plate current is obtained therethrough. When conduction starts, the inductive coil 14 causes a voltage to be induced in the grid coil I I, thus driving the grid 26 more positive in a manner similar to that of Figure 1. This causes the plate current of tube V1 to increase and causes the grid 26 to take more and more of the cathode emission until the plate current commences to decrease. The decrease in plate current tends to drive the grid negative and the tube is again driven to cutoff. The grid current flows through the capacitance C2 during this transient condition, until the grid is once again at ground potential. For operation of this circuit to occur, RsCZ must be relatively small and R1C1 must be relatively large. If the backward resistance of the diode V2 is designated as RB then the condition that time to be integrated. Once again a pulse counter is inductively coupled to the coil 14 to indicate the number of cycles. The number of cycles is proportional to the number of negatively charged particles collected.

It is seen that this invention provides means for very accurately measuring very low level currents, and is particularly valuable in recording the ion current for a cyclotron, for example.

' Although particular embodiments have been shown and described, the invention is not to be so limited to the particular arrangement of capacitances and resistances, because any arrangement which gives the equivalent circuit is within the broad scope of this invention, as defined by the appended claims.

I claim:

1. Means for measuring the rate of flow of positively charged particles comprising a collector-electrode having a virtual capacitance to ground with one plate of said collector-electrode connected in series with a pair of parallel resistors, and With the opposite end of one resistor connected to the control grid of a blocking oscillator and to a condenser, and with the time constant of the second resistor and the virtual capacitance being much greater than the maximum integrated time, and a pulse rate counter coupled to said blocking oscillator plate circuit.

2. A current integrator comprising an unknown current source with the positive polarity of said current source connected to a pair of resistors, and with the negative side of said current source connected to the opposite end of one of the resistors, a condenser connected between the opposite end of the one resistor and the opposite end of the other resistor, the opposite end of the other resistor connected to the control grid of a blocking oscillator, an inductive means coupled to the plate circuit of said blocking oscillator, and pulse counter means connected to said inductive means.

3. An integrator for measuring low values of current comprising a collector-electrode for 001- lecting negatively charged particles, said electrode connected to the cathode of a blocking oscillator, a diode tube V2 connected to the cathode of the blocking oscillator with the plate of the diode connected to the cathode of the blocking oscillator, a positive biasing voltage connected to the cathode of said diode, and a capacitance and resistance connected in parallel with the control grid of said blocking oscillator and to the high voltage side of the collector-electrode, an inductive means coupled to the plate circuit of the blocking oscillator, and means for indicating the number of blocking oscillator cycles.

4. A system according to claim 1 wherein the pulse rate counter is replaced by a pulse counter to integrate the current received at the collectorelectrode.


References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS.

Number Name Date 2,340,967 Langer Feb. 8, 1944 2,411,573 Holst et al Nov. 26, 1946 2,415,567 Schoenfeld Feb. 11, 1947 2,452,563 Glover Nov. 2, 1948 2,486,021 Gross Oct. 25, 1949 2,490,642 Lipson Dec. 6, 1949 2,500,473 Spaeth Mar. 14, 1950 2,500,581 Seeley Mar. 14, 1950

Patent Citations
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US2340967 *Feb 12, 1942Feb 8, 1944Westinghouse Electric & Mfg CoElectron discharge device
US2411573 *Nov 30, 1944Nov 26, 1946Rca CorpFrequency counter circuit
US2415567 *Dec 2, 1944Feb 11, 1947Rca CorpFrequency counter circuit
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2728862 *Feb 13, 1953Dec 27, 1955Tracerlab IncRadiation measuring instrument
US2789233 *Apr 30, 1953Apr 16, 1957Raytheon Mfg CoRadiation monitors
US2836794 *Mar 26, 1957May 27, 1958Southwestern Ind Electronics CPulse representation of variable voltage
US2890334 *Dec 15, 1955Jun 9, 1959Honeywell Regulator CoElectronic integrators
US2951196 *Dec 16, 1955Aug 30, 1960Allis Chalmers Mfg CoCounter for load tap changing transformer
US2957980 *Oct 4, 1955Oct 25, 1960Felix Steghart Fritz LudwigElectronic integrators and automatic controllers
US3231877 *Dec 28, 1960Jan 25, 1966Electricite De FrancePulse telemetering apparatus for transmitting to a remote location the value of a magnitude
US3760273 *Jun 24, 1971Sep 18, 1973Mc Culloch CorpElectronic watt hour meter
US4264861 *Dec 8, 1978Apr 28, 1981Institutul De Cercetari Pentru Industria ElectrotehnicaElectronic ampere-hour meter
U.S. Classification250/389, 244/177, 377/10, 331/65, 331/148, 331/64, 377/19, 324/111, 324/120
International ClassificationG01T1/15
Cooperative ClassificationG01T1/15
European ClassificationG01T1/15